Lion’s Swamp Worthing United in the Mud!
By Tony Shea
In even worse conditions than usual so far this year, Pagham slid, skidded and slithered to a well-deserved 7-0 win over a Worthing United side, who must have wished they had stayed at home long before the end of the game.
The writing was on the wall early, as Dan Simmonds scorched a shot less than a yard over the bar from just outside the box after 4mins. It didn’t take long for the ball to end up in the net though, as Simmonds lashed the ball home from about 15yds out, after an excellent cross from Shay Wiggans, to put his side 1-0 up in the 14th minute.
The only really controversial moment of the game came in the next minute, when Pagham goalie James Binfield appeared to bring a United forward down on the edge of the box. The referee disagreed and gave a corner, much to the annoyance of the visitors.
They were even more angered when, in the 17th minute, Callum Overton put the Lions two up as he slotted home, after collecting a long pass and outpacing the defence. It was almost three in the 20th minute when a scramble in the United penalty area led only to an offside flag from the assistant referee.
The Lions didn’t have long to wait for 3-0, when Simmonds shot home from close in after being set up beautifully by Overton in the 29th minute. Six minutes later, in the 35th minute, it was 4-0 as Simmonds completed his hat-trick, crashing home a sublime header from a James Thurgar corner.
A rare Worthing attack in the 40th brought them their best chance of the game, forcing Binfield into an excellent double save. And it could have been five for Pagham in the last minute of the half, when a superb ball by Lloyd Rowlatt found Andy Chick, but when his shot came back off the post, United keeper Matt Evans managed to grab the ball just before the onrushing Callum Overton could tap home.
The second half started as it would continue with more attacks from the Lions. First chance of the half fell to Overton, but his long run and shot only brought another fine save from Evans. On 68mins, Dan Simmonds grabbed his 4th and Pagham’s 5th, when he headed home from close range following a fine cross by Johan Van Driel. It was 6-0 in the 70th as a 25yd piledriver by Lloyd Rowlatt took a deflection before exploding into the net.
Various substitutions gave Tom Jefkins the opportunity to make an appearance on his return to the club. The scoring was completed in the 87th minute when teenage substitute Jack Parkinson scored at the far post, after a fierce cross shot by Overton came to him.
With the weather deteriorating even more, everybody in the ground was pleased to hear the final whistle as all players, coaches and managers ran for the warmth of the changing rooms.
Pagham’s Team was: James Binfield, Shamus Wiggans, Daryl Wollers (Jack Parkinson), Ryan Davidson, Joe Booker, Johan Van Driel (Jack Parkinson), James Thurgar, Andy Chick (Tom Jefkins), Dan Simmonds, Lloyd Rowlatt and Callum Overton. Subs not used, George Bingham and Ryan Cox